Issue of April 7, 2019
Mt. Province

Panagbenga Flower Festival
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Athletic pool rehab needed
by Ofelia C. Empian

The city’s public swimming pool is in dire need of repair, prompting the construction to start shortly after the Cordillera Administrative Region Athletic Association meet last March, according to the City Sports Development Office.

The rehabilitation of the swimming pool complex has already been delayed for a month, said Paul Rillorta of the City Sports Division.

He said the contractor was supposed to start last February but postponed it to allow athletes to use the area for their practices for the Caraa held in Apayao last month.

Rillorta said the contractor was issued the notice to proceed on Feb. 13. He said it was only on March 18 that they were able to close the swimming pool for the rehabilitation.

“We understand that the athletes have to practice daily but we cannot sacrifice their safety as well,” Rillorta said.

He said the city will be upgrading the swimming pool to meet the standard of Federation Internationale De Natation (FINA) or the International Swimming Federation.

Rillorta said the city hired a consultant from FINA, based in Singapore, to provide guidance for the rehabilitation. 

The city also needs to immediately implement the repair to avoid the election ban, Rillorta added.

Parents of athletes earlier vented their complaint on social media claiming the government lacked consideration when it ordered the closure despite knowledge that the area is being used for practices of swimmers.

Rillorta said they have coordinated with the Department of Education-Baguio Division to look for alternative areas where the athletes may train.

He said some of the students are training in Bineng, La Trinidad and at Asin, Tuba and other swimming pools.

Architect II Edwin Ancheta of the City Buildings and Architecture Office said the program of work for the P43 million-worth upgrading project will involve enclosure of the swimming pool, upgrading of shower rooms, locker rooms, and comfort rooms, and installation of solar panels at the roof.

“The swimming pool will be totally enclosed to prevent heat loss and minimize the cost of electricity,” Ancheta said.

The solar panels will also be used to supply current for the lighting needs as well as the heaters of the swimming pools. 

The CBAO is targeting to make the swimming pool Olympic-size, which is 50 meters. The present size of the swimming pool lacks a few millimeters to meet the standard size.

Ancheta said the swimming pool will be opened within the year.

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